MANUAL OF THE FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH SOC I ETY RAVENSWOOD, ILLINOIS. L± 187 6 CHICAGO.: 'UI.VElt, PAGE, HOYNE * CO., PItlNTERS. 1876. MANUAL FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH SOCIETY, RAVENSWOOD, ILLINOIS. 1876 CHICAGO : CULVER. PAGE, HOYNE A- CO., PRIXTEBS. 1876. ^^^'^>^ This Church -was Organized April 20th, 1876. ORGANIZATION AND RULES, The name of this church shall be The First Congregational Church of Ravenswood. This church is independent, — subject to no authority or govern- ment, except the votes of-' it^s members, and amenable only to Christ ; but extending to otherevangelical churches, and inviting from them. Christian fellowship and co-operation. This church is unsectarian ; in that it does not require of its members uniformity of opinion in matters concerning which mem- bers of evangelical churches do honestly differ, but rather insists upon Christian character and life, and a devout adherence to those grand doctrines of the Holy Scriptures, which are held to be essen- tial by all evangelical churches ; in that it is self-governing ; and, also, in that it seeks the fellowship and co-operation of all evangelical churches, thus aiming to promote visible and Scriptural oneness. DOCTRINAL STANDARD. The following compend is adopted as substantially a statement of the doctrines held by this church : 'IT fE believe in God. the Father Almighty, the Being of absolute ** perfection, the Creator, Presei-ver and Governor of the uni- verse; Who so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son for its redemption ; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was in the beginning with God and was God ; who became man and suftered to take away the sins of the world ; in whom we have redemption, being justified freely through faith in His blood; who rose from the dead, and ascended on high, and sitteth at the right hand of the Father; whence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead, punishing the wicked with everlast- ing destruction from His presence, and receiving His people into His everlasting kingdom : and in the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, through whom alone we, being l^y nature children of wrath, are renewed and sanctified; by whose inspiration the Scriptures are given ; who, with the Father and the Son, together one God, is supremely to be loved, and served, and alone to be adored ; and in one Church on earth and in heaven ; and in one Baptism for the remission of sins ; and we look for the Resurrection of the dead, and the life immortal. Amen. COVENANTS. " Keep, therefore, the words of this covenant and do them." — Deuteronomy xxix, 9. COVENANT OF MEMBERSHIP. DEARLY BELOVED— You are here before God and many witnesses, to confess the Lord Jesus Christ. We trust that you discern the solemnity and the blessedness of this confession, and that He who hath begun a good work in you will perform it, until the day of Jesus Christ. In the presence of God and of this assembly, you do now freely and cordially enter into the everlasting covenant of grace. You do confess the Father Almighty your Maker and Preserver, the Lord Jesus Christ your Savior and Master, and the Holy Spirit, Sanctifier and Guide, to be your God. 5 You do trust only in His Sovereign Grace, and Almighty Power. And you do promise that you will henceforth faithfully en- deavor to keep His commandments, and follow Him in all things ; to walk with His disciples in love, and denying all ungodliness and worldly lusts, to live soberly, righteously and godly, in this present world, looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious ap- pearing of the Great God, and Savior, Jesus Christ. This you truly confess and heartily engage ? COVENANT OF BAPTISM. TTAVING thus confessed your faith in Christ, you will now seal -*■-*■ this good confession according to our Lord's commandment by the ordinance of Baptism, in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. [Do you who have never been baptized, now with faith receive this Sacrament] [and] [Do you, who in childhood, by the faith of believing parents, were entered into the covenant of promise, now in your own faith, assume the baptism then administered] As the badge of your discipleship, the symbol of the washing of regeneration, and the seal of the everlasting covenant, in which you inherit the sure mercies of God, and dedicate [yourself] [your- selves] forever to a holy life ? Baptism hei-e administered to those not baptised, and those joining by Letter now present themselves. Do you now cordially unite [yourself] [yourselves] to this Church of Christ, promising to walk in compliance with its rules, to co-operate with us in the worship of God, and in the work of the Gospel, and earnestly to endeavor to promote the peace, wel- fare and usefulness of this Church ? We, then, the members of this Church [rising], in the name of Christ, affectionately welcome you to our communion, to a partici- pation in the duties and privileges of this Church ; and we faith- fully promise to watch over you, with Christian afteciion and ten- derness, highly esteeming you in love, for Christ's sake. This we do, looking to the great Shepherd of Israel, our Lord and Redeemer, that both we and you may receive wisdom and grace, to be faithful to these covenants, and to glorify Him with the holiness which becometh His house forever. Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, accordmg to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be gloiy in the church, by Christ Jesus, throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. The peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God, and of His Son Jesus Christ our Lord; and the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, remain with you always. Amen. COVENANT OF INFANT BAPTISM. Dearly Beloved — Accepting the promise of God, which is to you and to your offspring, you do now dedicate [this] [these] little [one] [ones] to God. You now covenant and engage to train up [this child] [these children] in the nurture and admoni- tion of the Lord, and by scriptural precepts, and a godly example, to keep [it] [them] in the love of Christ. God's covenant is to renew and sanctify your [child] [children] and so to bless the faiihful nurture which you promise, with the help of his Holy Spirit, that your [child] [children] shall grow up unto Christ in all things. Do you, in faith, join this gracious covenant, and honor the baptism of your [child] [children] as the symbol of the washing of regeneration and of Christian nurture, and as the seal of the covenant of grace, by which your [child is] [children are] set apart to be the Lord's? COVENANT OF OFFICERS. Dearly Beloved — You have been duly elected to positions of responsil)ility by the members of this Church, who now, for- mally and affectionately, commit to you, as to under-shepherds, the official care of its precious interests and its important work, earnestly believing that you will assume these trusts, as solemnly called to them of God, to whom you will give account of your stewardship. We invite your assent to this official covenant. You do now solemnly promise faithfully to perform the duties of the offices to which you have severally been appointed, to maintain the doctrine, order and discipline of this Church, and in good faith, by all proper means, to promote its spiritual and visible prosperity and usefulness. So you promise and engage. May you be indued with the wisdom and power which cometh from above, and may the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen. OFFICEES. The officers of this Church shall be a Pastor, two or more Dea- cons, two or more members of the Pastoral Committee, a Superin- tendent of the Sunday School, and a Clerk who shall also be Treasurer. Deacons and members of the Pastoral Committee shall be elected for four years, or for a shorter temi, to prevent a dispropor- tionate number of vacancies occurring at the same time. The Superintendent of the Sunday School and the Clerk shall be elected annually. DITTIES OF OFFIOEES. The Pastor shall "preach the Word," conduct public religious services, preside in the business meetings of the Church, e.xercise general oversight of the Sunday schools, religious meetings and other operations of the Church, and labor, by all proper means, to promote the spiritual welfare of the congregation. The Deacons shall assist in the administration of the sacra- ments ; in the absence, or at the request of the Pastor, provide a temporary supply for the pulpit and conduct religious meetings ; take up public collections, distribute the charities of the Church, attend to the courteous reception and comfort of all, and particu- larly of strangers, who assemble for public worship, and act as advisors and assistants of the Pastor in the general care and over- sight of the congregation. The Superintendent shall appoint teachers and conduct the exercises of the Sunday school, with the assistance of such officers as shall be elected by the school. The Clerk shall keep the records of the Church and minutes of the meetings of the Pastoral Committee, conduct correspond- ence, receive the funds of the Church and disburse the same on the order of the Deacons. He shall present, at the annual meeting, a statistical summary of the condition and operations of the Church, including the Sunday school and all other organizations connected with the Church. The officers of the Church shall constitute a Pastoral Com- mittee, which shall make preliminary inquiries concerning appli- cations for membership and concerning other important business, and shall report the same to the Church with such recommenda- tions as they may deem wise. The members of this committee are especially charged to promote the social well-being of the Church, to seek out and minister to the sick and the poor, and any in affliction who may need sympathy and help. This committee shall, from time to time, and especially at the annual meetings, make such communications and recommen- dations concerning the work of the Church as they may deem ad- visable. MEMBEES. ADMISSION. Candidates for membership should confer with the Pastor and present themselves at a meeting of the Pastoral Committee. Members elect shall assume the vows of baptism and assent to the covenant of membership. " DISMISSION. Members in good and regular standing may, at their own re- quest, be dismissed by vote and letter to other Evangelical Churches. No letter of dismission is valid for more than one year from its date, and no member's covenant relations with this Church ceases until he has entered into covenant with the Church to which he has been dismissed. Absent members are entitled to letters of dismission, dated back to the commencement of their absence ; and letters of more recent date may be given them upon satisfactory evidence of the con- tinued correctness of their Christian life. Members who have been absent three years or more may be communicated with by the Clerk, and if no satisfactory reasons are obtained for their continued neglect to ask letters to and connect themselves with other churches, they may be excluded by vote. Members purposely and habitually absenting themselves from the stated meetings and ordinances of the Church, members who refuse to pay any pecuniary obligation to the Church or Society, and members under any censure by vote of the Church, or who are disobedient to any admonition of the Church, are not in good and regular standing. EXCLUSION AND DISCIPLINE. Excommunication of a member may follow his conviction of any public or private offense, except he do works " meet for repent- ance." Discipline shall l)e conducted according to Congregational usage, as directed in Matthew xviii, 15-17. In cases of unquestionable breach of covenant vows, or of notorious immorality, the Church may proceed with:>ut trial to ad- monish the offender; and if admoni ion prove fruitless, to excom- munication. BAPTIZKD CHILDREN Are under the watch and care of the Church. It is confidently expected that they will in early youth profess Christ, on their own faith, and voluntarily assume the covenant vows of the Church. Parents chiefly, and the Church largely, are responsible for a Christian nurture being so judiciously and constantly exercised, that through the covenanted help of the Holy Spirit, each baptized child shall grow up into Christ. SACRAMENTS. The Lord's Supper is administered on the first Sabbaths of January, March, May, July, September and November. Baptism is administered immediately before the Lord's Supper, and at other convenient times. BUSINESS MEETINGS. The annual meeting shall be held on the second Monday of January. A regular meeting shall be held on the Wednesday next preceding each communion service. Ordinary business may be transacted at any general prayer meeting, or, in an emergency, at other meetings. Special meetings may be called by the Pastor, and the Clerk shall call a special meeting at the written request of five members. Special meetings shall be published on the Sabbath preceding from the pulpit, or by posting on the church building. Business meet- ings shall be conducted according to the generally approved rules of deliberative bodies. The Order of Business at the annual meeting shall be : I. Hearing, correction and approval of the records. IL Report of the Clerk. in. Communication from the Pastoral Committee. IV. Election of Officers. V. Appointment of Committee on Music. VI. Adoption of Plans for Benevolent Contributions for the year. VII. Miscellaneous business. This order may be changed by vote. All members of the Church above fifteen years of age, in good and regular standing, are entitled to vote, and eligible to office. Regular officers shall be chosen by ballot, and a majority of the votes cast shall be necessaiy to election. AMENDMENTS. Amendments to this organization and rules may be proposed and discussed at any regular business meeting, but shall not be adopted before the succeeding regular meeting. Rules for the Joint Action of the Church and Society. A majority of the Trustees of the Society shall be members of the Church, in good and regular standing. The Pastor shall use the church edifice for religious purposes at his discretion. The Church may also use it for religious pur- poses. The care and control of the buildings, in other respects, fhall be with the Socitty. The Deacons of the Chuirch shall provide a supply for the pulpit, in the absence of the Pastor. A Pastor may be elected either permanently or for a specified time. A call to the pastorate must originate in the Church, and receive the concurrence of the Society. The same order must be observed in vacating the pastorate. A committee of five persons to provide for singing and church music shall be appointed by the Church. These rules of joint action can be amended by a separate vote of the Church and Society, each body being governed by the rule for amending its own organization. CONSTITUTION OF THE SOCIETY. NAME AND OBJECT. The name of this Society shall be The First Congregational Society of Ravenswood. Its object shall be to co-operate with the First Congregational Church of Ravenswood in providing for and maintaining the public worship of God. membership. All persons above sixteen years of age, who are attendants on public worship with this church, and who contribute regularly in good faith directly or representatively to the revenue of the Society, are members of the Society, and qualified to vote at its meetings ; but no person shall be entitled to vote who refuses to pay any of his pecuniary obligations to the Society. The officers of this Society shall be a President, a Clerk, three Trustees, and a Treasurer to be appointed annually by the Trustees from their own number. The officers (excepting the Treasurer) shall be chosen by a majority ballot. The President and Clerk shall hold office one year, or until their successor.s are chosen. Trustees shall be elected for three years, or until their successors are chosen ; but may be elected for a shorter term to prevent several vacancies occurring at one time. The President sh.ill preside at meetings, audit the Treasurer's report and accounts, and certify to the condition of the same at the annual meeting. The Treasurer shall have the custody of the funds and valuable papers of the Society, collect all moneys and revenues, and make 13 a report exhibiting clearly the financial condition of the Society at the annual meeting. The Clerk shall issue calls for meetings, make and preserve a record of the proceedings of meetings, including abstracts of im- portant reports, and file and preserve reports and other papers. The Trustees shall have control and management of financial affairs. The real estate and other property shall be vested in the Trustees, who shall hold, manage and dispose of the same to pro- mote the objects of the Society, according to the laws of the State of Illinois, and subject to the rules and orders of the Society. The annual meeting shall be held on the second Tuesday of Januaiy; but if it should fail to be held on that day, it shall be called as other meetings. The Clerk shall call special meetings of the Society at the order of the Trustees, or at the written request of five persons who are qualified to vote. Notices of meetings shall be publicly given from the palpit, on the Sunday preceding, or if no public meeting is held on that Sun- day, notice shall be posted on the church at least five days previ- ous to the meeting called. All meetings shall be conducted according to the rules which commonly prevail in deliberative bodies. AMENDMENTS. This Constitution may be amended by a majority vote, provided the proposed amendment has been presented in writing at some previous meeting, or read from the pulpit with the call for the meeting at which the vote is taken. 14 LIST OF OFFICERS. PASTOR. Elected. Term Expired. Rev. W. A. Lloyd 1S70 DEACONS. J. H. Wright 1870 W. H. Hedges 1870 1875 James L. Barrows 1872 J. N. Wilkins 1875 SUPERINTENDENTS OF SUNDAY SCHOOL. Wm. P. Jones, Jr 1870 1870 J. H. Wright 1870 1872 Wm. P. Jones, Jr 1872 1873 Frank P. Barrows 1873 r874 Charles G. Chandler 1874 CLERKS. C. W. Clark 1870 1872 Frank L. Strong 1872 1875 Francis W. Little 1875 PASTORAL COMMITTEE. Rev. W. A. Lloyd 1870 J. H. Wright 1870 W. H. Hedges 1870 1875 James L. Barrows 1872 Mrs. J. L. Barrows 1873 J. N. Wilkins 1875 Mrs. J. N. Wilkins 1S75 John A. Cole , 1875 C. G. Chandler 1875 Francis W. Little 1875 OFFICERS OF THE SOCIETY. PRESIDENTS. Elected. Term Expired. Wm. P. Jones, Jr 1870 1871 Rev. W. A. Lloyd 1S71 1S72 H. T. Merrill 1S72 1S73 James L. Barrows 1S73 1S76 John A. Cole 1S76 TRUSTEES. Wm. P. Jones, Jr 1870 1871 W. H. Hedges 1870 1S75 J. H. Wright 1S70 1S73 Robert Greer 1871 John N. Hills 1873 C. G. Chandler 1S75 TREASURERS. W. H. Hedges 1S70 1S73 John N. Hills 1873 CLERKS. J. H. Wright 1S70 1870 B. T. Chandler 1S70 1872 William Smith 1S72 1873 H. D. Harris 1S73 1876 Francis W. Little 1876 i6 LADIES' SOCIAL SOCIETY. This Society was organized Januaiy 26th, 1 871, and has con- tributed largely to the social well being of the Church and com- munity. The amount of its revenue for the first three years cannot be definitely ascertained, but is icnown to have been fully as large, proportionately, as the receipts for the past three years, which were : 1873 ^Sii 34 1874 S268 84 r875 291 85 1876, six months 104 94 Total ^1.476 97 PRESIDENTS. Elected. Term Expired. Mrs. Helen M. Lloyd 1871 1872 Mrs. Mary E. Jones 1872 1873 Mrs. H. T. Merrill 1873 1874 Mrs. Carrie S. Hills 1874 1873 Mrs. Frances Wilkins 1875 1876 Mrs. Kate P. Little 1S76 VICE PRESIDENTS. Mrs. M. E. Jones 1S71 1872 Mrs. Jennie E. Wright 1872 1873 Mrs. A. H. Angell 1873 1874 Mrs. M. E. Jones 1874 1875 Mrs. Kate P. Little 1875 1876 Mrs. Alice D. Chandler 1876 SECRETARIES. Mrs. Catherine Greer 1871 1872 Mrs. Alice M. Hayes 1872 1873 17 Mrs. Carries. Hills 1873 Mrs. Ann A. Trudeau 1S74 Mrs. M. Louisa Strong 1S75 Miss Elvira Bannister 1876 TREASURERS. Mrs. M. A. Clark 1871 Mrs. Catherine Greer 1872 Miss Octavia Barrows 1S73 1874 1S75 1S76 1S72 1S73 CHURCH MEMBERSHIP. L .signifies Received by Letter ; P, Received by Pr -.fession: D, Dismissed 1. 3 Letter; *, Deceased. AVhen Received William A. Lloyd. April 20, 1870. L. Mrs. Helen M. Lloyd. May 4, 1870. L. Wm. H. Hedges. April 20, 1870. L. D. Feb. 18, 1875 Mrs. Maria C. Hedges. u u " Jane Bowen (Sultzer). u " C. W. Clark. u " J. H. Wright. May 4, 1S70. " Mrs. J. E. Wright. u Henry Sultzer. Sept. II, 1870. P. H. W. Carpenter. Feb. 5, 1871. L. D. Oct. I, 1874 Mrs. :Mary Carpenter. " '• <. u Robert Greer. » <•• Mrs. Catherine Greer. .< " John McMeekin. " " D. April, 1873 Edward Hayes. June 4, 1 87 1. P. Mrs. Alice M. Hayes. « L. *i874 Conrad Laubmeyer. Jan. I, 1872. P. Frank L. Strong. " L. Mrs. M. Louisa Strong. " " Charles Trudeau. Mrs. Ann A. Trudeau. Mrs. Ella G. Bryan. James L. Barrows, Jr. Frank P. Barrows. Charles W. Chandler. Mrs. Mai7 Chandler. James L. Barrows. Mrs. Hannah Barrows. John J. Barrows. Mary E. Barrows. Octavia J. Barrows. Lavinia F. Barrows. Christian Olson. Chauncey Rheinboth. John A. Fishleigh. Mrs. Rosella R. Gordon. .Sarah A. Frost. Minnie A. Fishleigh. Lillie H. Jones. Charles Laubmeyer. Hubbard D. Harris. Mrs. Jennie A. Harris. Mrs. Augusta H. Angell. Mrs. Cordelia Howard. William P. Jones, Jr. Mrs. Mary E. Jones. James W. Andrews. Mrs. Sarah Andrews. Samuel W. Bassett. Mrs. Mary Bassett. Sarah A. Orcutt. Jessie Wilkins. John Wilbur Wilkins. Charles H. Knight. When Received. Jan. I, 1872. July I, 1872. Nov. I, 1872. March 2, 1873. May 4, 1873. June I, 1873, Sept. 7, 1873, Jan. 4, March [874, , i874> 'July 7. 1S74. ^Apiil, 1873. D. Feb. 25, 1876. Leroy C. Hedges. March i, i 874 P. Albert P. Hedges. ' " Willie W. Lloyd. ' " Hattie W. Lloyd. ' ' " William Zeutel. " J. H. Bruns. ' ' '< Mrs. Caroline E. Bruns. ' " Hale Knight. ' L. Mrs. Jennie G. Knight. ' ' " Nettie Turner. ' ' " John N. Wilkins. < ' " Mrs. Frances Wilkins. ' <' Andrew Brotherston. ' " Maggie Wright. Jan. 3, 1875, P. Mrs. H. M. Galloway. May 2, 1875, L. John A. Cole. July 4, 1875, " Mrs. Julia A. Cole. " " Mrs. A. A. Wiswall. " " " Francis W. Little. P. Charles G. Chandler. Sept. 5. 1875- L. Mrs. A. D. Chandler. " " " Lucy Hart. " " P. D. Feb. 18, 1875.